NJ drivers admit to ‘unsafe behavior’ behind the wheel, survey shows
A new national survey from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety finds 87 percent of drivers engage in unsafe behavior behind the wheel.
Almost 9-in-10 people surveyed admit to not only distracted driving at least once in the past month, but also impaired or drowsy driving, speeding, red light-running and low seat belt use.
"There is so much attention given to it, yet nobody seems to be taking it seriously," said Tracy Noble, spokesperson for of AAA Mid-Atlantic Noble who calls it a "culture of indifference."
The survey reveals that 70 percent of drivers report talking on a cell phone in the past month. In addition, 2-in-5 admit to reading a text message, and 12 percent admit to doing both fairly regularly.
Nearly half, (48 percent), admit to driving 15 miles-an-hour over the speed limit on a highway recently and 45 percent report going 10 miles per hour over the limit.
Almost 1-in-3 drivers said they have driven when they were so tired they had trouble keeping their eyes open. About 225 people admitted to driving drowsy more than once in the past 30 days.
About 18 percent of the drivers in the national survey admitted driving with using their seat belt within the past 30 days.
Noble said New Jersey's seat belt use is much higher than the national average. However, she says the other bad habits just keep repeating themselves, and with them, serious accidents, "they are happening daily on our roadways, and they are preventable."
Thirty-three thousand Americans died in car crashes in 2014, and preliminary estimates show a 9 percent increase last year.
Joe Cutter is the afternoon news anchor on New Jersey 101.5.